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A helmet with a roughly cubic array of six superconducting coils is used to apply force on a small permanent magnet pellet in brain or in brain phantom material. This apparatus, called the Magnetic Stereotaxis System, will be used to deliver drugs and other therapies directly into deep brain tissues, under control of a computer and fluoroscopic imaging system. This paper considers only the force application aspects of the instrument. The primary design features of the helmet and power supply controls are presented, along with field plot data and single-axis motion results. The field plot data show that agreement with the finite-element iron-free field calculations is sufficiently high (>1%) for the instrument. These preliminary motion data indicate accuracy better than 2 mm for the impulsive pellet motion, even though the visual position observations had significantly greater error than the completed imaging system will have. The companion paper will take up analysis of the control aspects of the motion, and the authors' recent solutions to difficulties found in the experimental work described here.
Date of Publication: Aug. 1995